Netflix Buys Exclusive Rights to Bletchley Circle From PBS

Broadcaster on a roll with expanded agreements

Just days after PBS' announcement that it was expanding its agreement with Amazon to include exclusive rights to Downton Abbey (along with non-exclusive rights to other shows), Netflix bought an exclusive window to several other shows on the public broadcaster, including WWII-period code-breaking saga The Bletchley Circle and preschool series Super Why.

The network has been expanding its offerings on digital services in the last year; the agreements are bringing revenue to the nonprofit, and its mandate—television as a public service—gives it a little more latitude to expand its offerings without worrying about how it will look on a quarterly report to shareholders. Thus, Amazon, Netflix and Roku, among others, now have access to PBS's kids' programs (Arthur, Calliou, Wild Kratts) and the network's exclusives are spread out among providers anxious to gain a competitive edge by offering material unique to the network.

PBS received $46 million in "undesignated video revenue" from agreements like the pacts with Netflix and Amazon last year.